Part Five of our Five-Part series (See Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4) addresses another preventative measure trademark owners can take, which is to regularly review the Trademark Official Gazette (TMOG). The TMOG is published every Tuesday and is available on the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)’s website in both an electronically searchable format as well as in PDF format. Its main purpose is to provide bibliographic information and a drawing for each mark that has been published through the USPTO. Also included is a list of cancelled and renewed registrations for each mark.
You may be thinking, “What is the relevance of the TMOG to me as a trademark owner?” The answer is that it gives you notice of actions that are being taken by the USPTO with regard to certain marks that may be of interest to your portfolio, such as those that are confusingly similar to your marks. This allows you to take action early rather than be blindsided by the mark later on.
As discussed in Part Four, the publication of a mark in the TMOG allows for a period of opposition by any party who believes he or she will be damaged by the registration of the trademark. That party has 30 days to either file an opposition to the trademark with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) or request an extension of time to file a notice of opposition. The cost to file a notice of opposition is $300 for each class of goods or services, but it is free to file a request an extension of time to file a notice of opposition.
The TMOG is an excellent source of information about marks as they become registered. Keeping abreast of these filings will arm you with the information you need to ensure that the marks you have worked so hard to maintain will stay protected. Contact David Lilenfeld or Sonia Lakhany at Lilenfeld PC to help you evaluate your options for opposing a mark, or for any other intellectual property need you may have.